Interventional endoscopy, also known as therapeutic endoscopy or interventional gastroenterology, is a minimally invasive procedure that involves the use of a special medical device called an endoscope. It’s a thin and flexible tube equipped with a camera and light on the tip of it.
During interventional endoscopy, the doctor inserts the endoscope either in the mouth or rectum and passes through the oesophagus or intestines to check for problems. The doctor can also use it to evaluate and diagnose the surrounding organs such as the pancreas.
Interventional Endoscopy Procedures
Interventional endoscopy involves several procedures that can diagnose or treat conditions in a minimally invasive manner. These procedures include the following but are not limited to:-
- ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatoscopy):- This is used to treat or manage bile duct and pancreatic issues such as gallstones, blockages and cancer.
- EUS (Endoscopic Ultrasound):- The doctor uses this procedure to diagnose cancers of the bile ducts, pancreas and gallbladder.
- Enteroscopy:- This procedure is used for the examination of the small bowel.
- Enteral Stent Insertion:- The doctor uses this procedure to treat narrowing or blockages of the oesophagus, stomach and bowel.
- Endoscopic Tissue Resection (EMR & ESD):- With these procedures, the doctor removes the cancerous or precancerous growths from the lining of the oesophagus, stomach, small bowel, large bowel and rectum.
- Per Oral Endoscopic Myotomy (POEM):- This procedure is minimally invasive used to manage Achalasia and other oesophageal motility conditions.
Why is interventional endoscopy used?
The doctor can use interventional endoscopy to screen, diagnose, manage and treat the following:-
- Complications from bariatric surgery
- Colon and rectal bleeding, polyps and cancer
- Colon polyp resection, including large polyps
Esophageal diseases include:-
- Esophageal cancer
- Barrett’s oesophagus
Gallbladder diseases include:-
- Chronic gallbladder
- Gallbladder cancer
- Chronic gallbladder inflammation (Cholecystitis)
Gastric stomach diseases include:-
- Gastric cancer
- Gastrointestinal bleeding
- Gastrointestinal pain from malignancies
Pancreatic diseases include:-
- Pancreatic cysts
- Pancreatic cancer
- Pancreas divisum
- Pancreatic insufficiency
- Acute and chronic pancreatitis
- Pancreatic pain from malignancies
Colorectal diseases include:-
- Anal fissure
- Piles or haemorrhoids
Interventional endoscopy is also used to prevent cancer by removing growths (polyps) before they become cancerous.
Apart from all the above, there can be several other interventional endoscopy procedures that the doctor may use depending on the type of need of the patient.